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NaganoJapan

Enjoy vegetarian food and go skiing in this scenic mountain region, explore the ancient wooden Zenkoji Temple and historic castle, and hear legends of ninja warriors.

Nagano, on Japan’s main island Honshu, is the capital city of the prefecture of the same name. The city is most famous as being the home of the Zenkoji Temple, a national treasure. Visit this important site of pilgrimage, but also be sure to make the most of the region’s other attractions. At the nearby mountains, go skiing or see macaque monkeys bathe in hot springs. Learn about the culture of the samurai warriors and view 300-year-old chestnut and beech trees in Oku Susobana Natural Park.

Visit the grand complex of the Zenkoji Temple to see one of the largest wooden temples in Japan. The main temple dates back to the seventh century and is said to house a very early Buddha statue.

Take the train to the castle town in the suburb of Matsushiro to see the legacy of a 17th-century warlord. Discover the samurai way of life at the Sanada and Yokota Residences and the Sanada Treasure Museum. Explore a bunker which hid the Emperor and government during World War II.

At the Togakure Ninpo Museum, try your hand at shuriken throwing like a ninja. Navigate mazes and secret doors and learn about Nishina Daisuke, a samurai who created his own style of ninjutsu.

Head to the nearby Joshinetsu Kogen National park and marvel at the snow monkeys in the hot springs of the Jigokudani Wild Monkey Park in Yamanouchi. At the onsen (traditional Japanese resorts) in the area you can enjoy the thermal pools for yourself. In winter, choose from over 20 ski resorts to carve up the snow on the nearby Shiga plateau.

Nagano is about a 2-hour train journey from Tokyo. Its central transport hub provides good connections to the major attractions in and around the city. Hire a car to explore the countryside. Join mushroom and fruit-picking expeditions or visit a local miso manufacturer. Nagano has a long history of catering for Zenkoji Temple’s Buddhist monks, so vegetarians will want to linger in this scenic area.

Where to stay in Nagano

Shiga Highlands, Yamanouchi, Nagano, Japan

Shiga Highlands

5/5Exceptional!(2 area reviews)

Shiga Highlands is noteworthy for its skiing, and you can make a stop at top attractions like Shiga Kogen Ski Area and Hasuike Ski Area.

Shiga Highlands
Madarao Mountain Resort, Iiyama, Nagano, Japan

Madarao Mountain Resort

You'll enjoy the museums and ski areas in Madarao Mountain Resort. You might want to make time for a stop at Madarao Kogen Ski Resort or Madarao Kogen Picture Book Art Museum.

Madarao Mountain Resort
Kurita, Nagano, Nagano, Japan

Kurita

The restaurants and shopping are just a few features travellers like about Kurita. If you want to do some sightseeing nearby, Zenko-ji Temple and Nagano Prefectural Shinano Art Museum are a few top places to visit.

Kurita
Togakushi, Nagano, Nagano, Japan

Togakushi

You'll enjoy the museums and monuments in Togakushi. You might want to make time for a stop at Togakushi Shrine or Chibikko Ninja Village.

Togakushi
Takai, Takayama, Nagano, Japan

Takai

If you're spending some time in Takai, Joshin'etsu-kogen National Park and Japanese Weeping Cherry Tree are top sights worth seeing.

Takai
Echo Land, Hakuba, Nagano, Japan

Echo Land

While Echo Land may not have many sights to explore, venturing just a little farther will lead you to top things to see and do like Happo-one Adam Gondola and Hakuba 47 Winter Sports Park.

Echo Land

Top hotels in Nagano

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Hotel Metropolitan Nagano
Hotel Metropolitan Nagano
3.5 out of 5
1346 Minami-ishido-cho, Nagano, Nagano-ken
The price is £75 per night

Located in the heart of Nagano, this hotel is 1.3 mi (2.1 km) from Zenko-ji Temple and 1.4 mi (2.3 km) from Nagano Prefectural Shinano Art Museum. M-Wave Olympic ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (987 reviews)

"Location was most convenient right next to Nagano station that has a mall, supermarket and cafes. Room is clean and beds are comfy. Room size is ok but could have been better if they have a better layout to cater for bigger luggage."…"

Reviewed on 8 Mar 2020

Hotel Metropolitan Nagano
Courtyard by Marriott Hakuba
Courtyard by Marriott Hakuba
3 out of 5
2937 Hokujo, Kitaazumi-gun, Hakuba, Nagano
The price is £159 per night

Situated in Hakuba, this hotel is steps away from Hakuba Art Museum and Hakuba Valley Ski Area. Hakuba Goryu Ski Resort and Happo-one Adam Gondola are also within ...

4.6/5Wonderful! (131 reviews)

"Check in is very slow. Receptionist not property trained. Room is clean and modern with hot spring tube."…"

Reviewed on 3 Feb 2020

Courtyard by Marriott Hakuba
Hotel JAL City Nagano
Hotel JAL City Nagano
3 out of 5
1221, Toigosho-machi, Nagano, Nagano-ken
The price is £52 per night

Located in the heart of Nagano, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Zenko-ji Temple and Nagano Prefectural Shinano Art Museum. M-Wave Olympic Memorial Arena ...

4/5Very Good! (416 reviews)

"We stayed here for 2 nights. Room was clean and basic. Bed comfortable. Front desk need a lot of improvement. Not really helpful when we enquire on carpark. For some odd reason the internal carpark is not available for guest. We have to find outside carpark to park our car which is very inconvenient. ..."…"

Reviewed on 1 Oct 2019

Hotel JAL City Nagano

Popular places to visit in Nagano

Nozawa Onsen Snow Resort
Image for Nozawa Onsen Snow Resort

Nozawa Onsen Snow Resort

4/5(1 review)

Explore the stunning tree-lined ridges and open slopes of this ski resort. Soak tired muscles in healing hot springs in the nearby traditional village.

Hakuba Happo-One Ski Area
Image for Hakuba Happo-One Ski Area

Hakuba Happo-One Ski Area

5/5(1 review)

Hit the slopes at Hakuba Happo-One Ski Area, a top ski area in Hokujo. Discover the mountain views while you're in the area.

Hakuba Valley Ski Area
Image for Hakuba Valley Ski Area

Hakuba Valley Ski Area

5/5(1 review)

Hit the slopes at Hakuba Valley Ski Area, a top ski area in Nagano. Discover the mountain views while you're in the area.

Shiga Kogen Ski Area
Image for Shiga Kogen Ski Area

Shiga Kogen Ski Area

4/5(2 reviews)

Hit the slopes at Shiga Kogen Ski Area, a top ski area in Yamanouchi. Discover the hot springs and mountain views in this relaxing area.

Jigokudani Monkey Park
Image for Jigokudani Monkey Park

Jigokudani Monkey Park

4.5/5(11 reviews)

Explore the great outdoors with a trip to Jigokudani Monkey Park, a popular green space in Yudanaka Shibu Onsen. Discover the hot springs and mountain views in this culturally rich area.

Zenko-ji Temple
Image for Zenko-ji Temple

Zenko-ji Temple

4.5/5(7 reviews)

Learn about the history of Zenko-ji Temple, one of the top monuments in Nagano. Visit the temples and shops in this walkable area.

Top things to do in Nagano

13-hour Snow Monkey Park to/from Tokyo with Private Car
Image for 13-hour Snow Monkey Park to/from Tokyo with Private Car

13-hour Snow Monkey Park to/from Tokyo with Private Car

£926
Per adult
Snow Monkeys, Shiga Kogen Roman Museum with Lunch Buffet!
Image for Snow Monkeys, Shiga Kogen Roman Museum with Lunch Buffet!

Snow Monkeys, Shiga Kogen Roman Museum with Lunch Buffet!

£110
Per adult
100% of travellers recommend
Private Guided Nagano Day Trip with Zenko-ji & Jigokudani Monkey Park
Image for Private Guided Nagano Day Trip with Zenko-ji & Jigokudani Monkey Park

Private Guided Nagano Day Trip with Zenko-ji & Jigokudani Monkey Park

£888
Per adult

Reviews of Nagano

4.3

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
1
5 - Excellent 25%
4 - Good
3
4 - Good 75%
3 - Okay
0
3 - Okay 0%
2 - Disappointing
0
2 - Disappointing 0%
1 - Terrible
0
1 - Terrible 0%

5/5 - Excellent

SameBey789

2 Jan 2020

Nagano is awesome

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